In London, they're auditioning hobbits for the stage musical version of "The Lord of the Rings." It flopped in Toronto, closing three months early. Now it's opening early next year, with the show shortened and tightened and otherwise fiddled with.
Meanwhile, MGM says they HOPE Peter Jackson does the movie version of "The Hobbit" they want. But what project is Jackson actually developing? Along with "The Lovely Bones," (the book he optioned and is working on a screenplay with his partners on), Jackson has just optioned the Temeraire series of books by Naomi Novik. These clever books (she's written three) envision the Napoleonic Wars in a world where dragons exist. Combine dragons with naval battles and you are talking a VERY expensive movie. The books are solid fare for fantasy buffs, with the first one okay and the second two improving on the idea in every way. It's easy to see why Jackson would be interested.